If your Valentine’s Day is looking a little lonely, don’t worry: you have a date with Jeff Kaplan and his latest Developer Update, where he discusses some hero balance issues that have been on the mind of Overwatch players.
The first thing is a confirmation on those Sombra changes that accidentally made it to Live—they’ll be on the PTR to be checked and tested. These changes increase the power and utility of Sombra’s single target hack by a good deal, but remove her hacked first aid kits’ ability to charge up her ultimate at lightning speed. Translocator will last longer, meaning Sombras will have more time to set up a plan, get in, and get out. The PTR will allow players to test out this new Sombra, who should feel more like an Offense character and less like an odd hybrid Support.
How about Mei, everyone’s favorite ice queen? The Overwatch dev team thinks she’s close to balanced, but are testing a longer freeze duration. This should prevent slippery DPS from getting away once they’ve gotten around a corner or some distance from Mei. They’re also giving her some more ammo for her secondary fire, which means Genjis and McCrees are on notice: Mei’s a better sniper than ever.
Doomfist is receiving a small change to his firing rate. He will fire more often, with shots that do less damage. He should feel like he’s doing the same amount of damage, but it should be more consistent and feel more satisfying.
As for Hanzo, he’ll be coming “soon”. Blizzard have tried giving Hanzo some new, alternate abilities that were discussed on the forums, including a reload for his special arrows and a barrier piercing snipe. Instead, the team chose to test a rapid-fire ability that snaps off five arrows in rapid succession. Hanzo can also horizontally leap in whatever direction he’s facing. While Hanzo won’t be on the PTR along with Sombra and Mei’s more substantial changes, it sounds like he’s coming along nicely.
Finally, Jeff teases us with the next two heroes in the dev team’s sights: Symmetra and Torbjörn. Those of us who love to build in Overwatch can look forward to future updates.